NEWS & INSIGHT FROM THE FPA
FPA WEBINAR 2 JULY
Last Thursday’s webinar was again well attended and members had plenty of questions for our guests Peter Borg-Neil from Oakman Inns and Robin Clark from Just Eat Takeaway. We are enormously grateful to them for joining us – thank you.
- Peter Borg-Neal focused on what Oakman Inns has done during lockdown – campaigning for the safe reopening of the sector, the need to safeguard jobs and for the reduction of social distancing from 2m to 1m. His operation is very much looking forward to Saturday’s reopening and hoping that people will behave sensibly. Looking ahead Peter believes the sector will need continued support and is lobbying for a reduction in VAT on food and the abolition of earnings-related national insurance for those earning under £25k.
- Robin Clark focused on the measures Just Eat put in place during lockdown, the learnings that Just Eat was able to gain from its operations in other countries and the investment in helping the sector maximise trade with its £11 million support programme for its UK restaurant partners. Robin believes that the foodservice packaging sector must continue to work towards sustainable alternatives.
- Both speakers felt that some changes are here to stay – such as in-restaurant screening and changes in eating habits. Robin reported that we are collectively eating dinner earlier – previously 7pm was the peak period, now it starts from 5pm.
If you missed this excellent session the link to view it on demand is here.
The next FPA webinar will be on 18 July with a guest speaker from HMRC.
EPR, DRS, CONSISTENCY & PLASTICS TAX CONSULTATIONS DELAYED
Last week Defra announced the second stage, technical, consultations on its proposed packaging legislation has been put back to early 2021. The email from Defra advises the implementation date is ‘still under review’. We advise that businesses should work on the assumption that all the measures will be introduced on the original dates: Plastics Tax April 2022, EPR, DRS and Consistency 2023. With regards to the Plastics Tax, HMRC has agreed to take part in our next webinar on 16 July so we are hoping for more clarity at that point.
SUPPORTING THE HOSPITALITY SUPPLY CHAIN – CONTACT YOUR MP
UK Hospitality (UKH) has published a template letter to be sent by members of the hospitality supply chain to their MPs. This is part of the UKH Supplier Alliance to provide a voice for hospitality supply businesses that have been as negatively impacted as hospitality operators during the pandemic. With the difficulties being experienced by operators in reopening, support for the supply sector needs to continue. To quote UKH: “These (hospitality supply) businesses are intrinsic to the functioning of the hospitality sector, will be critical to a successful restart and, will face severe hardship should government support be discontinued while the hospitality sector is still in the early stages of reopening”.
A link to the template letter for you and your colleagues can be downloaded here
LITTER: LOCAL AUTHORITIES DESPAIR
If you read last Friday’s Digest you will have seen an excellent poster displayed by Brighton and Hove Council. This week we follow up with one from York and the Royal Parks. You can sense the frustration in these posters as the public descend in huge numbers to beaches and parks with picnics and drinks. Executive Director Martin Kersh says: “We don’t blame the public for wanting to do this but if you can carry bags of food and drink to a beach then you can take your empties home. We agree there aren’t enough bins but bin numbers are geared to average visitors. We must remember additional bins have to be emptied and this adds costs to our extremely hard pressed local authorities. If you take a picnic to a public space why should you expect bins to be available? Surely the mindset must be it is the responsibility of the public to take their waste home?. There are some who say you can’t expect young people to take their rubbish home because they may not want parents to be aware of their drinking alcohol. Apart from not being convinced it is under 18’s creating all the litter this is simply no excuse. We need to establish the mindset that we are individually responsible for our waste when out of home, take responsibility for it and not leave it for others to deal with. At least bring a plastic sack and use it as you consume”.
Also on a litter theme, following on from the success of the recent #Dontthrowonthego Pledge2Recycle Plastics campaign, the RECOUP communications team created a short video with a summer theme. You can watch here.
BIBA ‘WHERE COMPOSTABLE PACKAGING WORKS BEST’ WEBINAR
The BBIA is holding a webinar on the theme ‘Where Compostable Packaging Works Best’ and members are invited to attend. It is on 10 July from 10am and brings together experts to explore the best application of compostable packaging and opportunities for growth.
The session is chaired by BBIA Managing Director David Newman, and will feature Andy Sweetman (BBIA Chairman and Futamura), Kieran MacSweeney (Biotec), Mark Shaw (Parkside Flexibles) and Caroline Herveou (Planet Organics).
You can register here.
GOVERNMENT PUBLISHES PRACTICAL GUIDELINES TO HELP RESTAURANTS AND PUBS OPEN SAFELY
Thousands of pubs, restaurants and hairdressers across England have been given practical, clear steps they can take to reopen safely over the coming weeks.
New Covid-19 secure guidance for the hospitality sector and hairdressers means businesses will be able to reopen in England from 4 July, provided they meet government criteria for keeping staff and customers as safe as possible. Read here.
FPA IN THE NEWS
We’ve already had pick up in a number of titles following the reissuing of our guidelines for the safe handling of foodservice packaging:
National Federation of Fish Fryers
Our statement on reusables has also been picked up widely, last week it was featured in the US title Daily Coffee News and this week has been picked up by the ideas and technology title Wired.
CORONAVIRUS RELATED NEWS
The Wall Street Journal reports that the demand for plastic bags, wraps and other hard to recycle items has surged amid worries about Covid-19. Read here.
Spiked! tells us that it is our duty to support the opening of pubs this weekend as they are the core of our UK sociability. Read here.
Let’s Recycle reports that this year’s Recycle Week (21-27 September) will thank the nation for recycling under lockdown. People can get involved by using #RecycleWeek on social media and posting content using the Recycle Week ‘Together – We Recycle’ theme. Read here.
Circular Online reports on the government’s initiative announced this week to create thousands of new jobs through a £40 million Green Recovery Challenge Fund to ‘restore nature and tackle climate change’. Read here.
Edie reports that renewables accounted for a record 47% of electricity generation in the first quarter of 2020. Read here.